This is the 6th of Caren J. Werlinger’s books I have read and once again she has stepped outside of the traditional Lesbian genres. After a series of extremely well done novels and the start of a mage/dragon lore fantasy series, The Beast That Never Was is by far the lightest and most fun of her stories to date.
This is a fairy tale, told in the style of a novel, and a romance at that, but it’s a fairy tale to the core. Set in the wild forest and with a cast of the Kings’ Huntsmen, woodchoppers, howling wolves, packs of scared torch-wielding villagers and the obligatory curse on the beautiful young woman, it has everything we expect from the best bedtime stories.
With Ms Werlingers’ excellent writing style and gorgeous prose the descriptions flow off the page. The characters are whole and deep without heavy descriptions. The tension of thwarted lesbian lovers runs alongside that of the cursed beast’s fear of discovery. And the whole is sweetened by some charming inter-relationships and the innocent love of two young women.
I don’t particularly remember loving fairy tales when I was young, although I do remember having a heavy tome of them my parents read from, but this was thoroughly enjoyable reading. All you mum’s out there, this is a perfect counter to traditional ‘prince gets the girl’ stories we grew up on. And for the rest – it is an extremely well written and charming read.
(publisher review copy received)
To buy from Amazon.com – click here.
To buy from Amazon.co.uk – click here.